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Minister of Children’s Services Danielle Larivee issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Review of 18-Year-Old Peter:
“The death of any young person is a tragic loss felt by their loved ones and their community. My thoughts are with all those who knew and cared for this young man.
“Peter showed resilience in the face of repeated trauma and loss. Understanding and responding to this kind of trauma is a critical part of success in the work of Children’s Services. That’s why we’ve begun implementing changes to better recognize and address the long-term impacts of grief, trauma and loss on the youth we support.
“The transition into adulthood is always a challenging time but the challenges faced by young people leaving the child intervention system are unique. We continue to adapt our practices to support at-risk youth with complex needs to transition into healthy, successful adulthood.
“While the Advocate noted that transition policies are in place, every young person faces different challenges and we have to do more to support them in ways that recognize their unique circumstances. That’s why we are developing a Cultural Understanding Framework to support staff to deliver services in a way that promotes better outcomes for Indigenous children, youth and families.
“Given the legacy of residential schools and intergenerational trauma in Indigenous families, we want to acknowledge the importance of continuing our work towards reconciliation.
“We accept the intent of the Advocate’s recommendation and will continue to work with the Advocate to explore how we can best implement that intent and strengthen the ways we protect and support Alberta’s children and youth.”